Huge Fireball Spotted Over East Coast Monday Night

A huge fireball briefly lit up the skies over the East Cost on Monday night, and footage of the meteor caught by a driver’s dashcam has gone viral.

According to WNYW, reports of the fireball started coming in at about 6:35 p.m. local time.

In the video, captured by Peter Czech of Hanover, New Jersey, you can see the fireball enter through the top-right of the screen before fading out.

Another witness to the fireball in New Hampshire reportedly saw flames. And an observer in New Jersey thought they were seeing a spent firework.

The fireball was observed along a huge stretch of the East Coast of the United States, with witnesses as far north as Maine (and even into Canada), and as far south as Delaware, with the majority of the over 300 reports coming in from New York and Boston, according to the American Meteor Society (AMS).

"Heat Map" showing the density of reports of the fireball.
“Heat Map” showing the density of reports of the fireball.
Estimated impact site of the meteor.
Estimated “geometric impact point” of the meteor.

Fireballs — or, meteors, as they’re known scientifically — can make for an impressive site in the night sky, caused by a chunk of space rock burning up on entering the Earth’s atmosphere. While the vast majority do nothing more than cause a brief light show in the sky, they are still chunks of rock hurtling toward Earth at ridiculous speeds, and in some cases, can even cause damage. Most famously, a meteor entered the Earth’s atmosphere over Chelyabinsk, Russia, exploding with such a force that a shock wave damaged several thousand buildings and caused about 1,500 injuries, according to this Inquisitr report.

Did you witness the East Coast fireball Monday night? Share your story in the Comments below.

[Images courtesy of: WNYW, American Meteor Society]

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